Teaching the Natural and Social Sciences – EDUC 531

CG • Section 8WK • 11/08/2019 to 04/16/2020 • Modified 07/28/2020

Course Description

Using a thematic approach, the integration of the natural and social sciences with other areas of the curriculum is the focus of this course. Candidates will complete assignments in the areas of the natural sciences, social sciences, language arts, and Bible/character education. Candidates will also generate and implement a thematic teaching unit that includes instructional activities for the natural sciences, social sciences, language arts, and Bible/character education.

Prerequisites

None

Rationale

In accordance with the recommended skills and standards of learning, every teacher must be committed to provide experiences within the scope of natural and social sciences that will enable candidates to understand how people relate to others and their ideas in order to value a free society. These same standards also require teachers to encourage problem-solving and critical thinking in a scientific way.

Measurable Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, the candidate will be able to:

  1. Incorporate content from the natural sciences, social sciences, Language Arts, and Bible/character education fields, appropriate for students of kindergarten through grade eight, into self-contained teaching units.
  2. Develop learning units and materials appropriate for the maturity level, community expectations, and family values of his/her students.
  3. Analyze the concept that “all students can learn” and apply it to multiple methods of teaching (visual, auditory, and kinesthetic).
  4. Incorporate appropriate visual, auditory, and kinesthetic stimuli in the development of instructional integrated design.
  5. Develop integrated lessons which focus on Bible/character education resources for the classroom.
  6. Develop a virtual field trip experience that will allow students to experience, firsthand, the integration the natural sciences, social sciences, Language Arts, and Bible/character education fields in a naturally connected environment.
  7. Analyze and conceptualize the function and duty of the teacher in the area of Authentic Assessment.
  8. Explain in detail how technology is changing the concept of the instructional environment to include the world beyond the classroom.
  9. Develop a 5-week teaching unit with an emphasis on thematic and integrated topics in the natural sciences, social sciences, Language Arts, and Bible/character education

Course Assignment

Textbook readings, articles, and lecture presentations

Course Requirements Checklist

After reading the Course Syllabus and Student Expectations, the candidate will complete the related checklist found in Module/Week 1.

Discussion Board Forum (2)

Discussion boards are collaborative learning experiences. Therefore, the candidate will complete two Discussion Board Forums throughout the course. The candidate is required to create a thread in response to the provided prompt for each forum. Each thread must be at least 450 words and demonstrate course-related knowledge. The candidate must incorporate at least two sources in current APA format to support his/her answer. In addition to the thread, the candidate is required to reply to another candidate’s threads. Each reply must be at least 200 words. (MLO: C, H)

Unit Map

The candidate will develop a unit map PowerPoint for the integration of the 3 subject areas and Bible/character education. A central science topic will be chosen for the connecting theme. An example of the assignment is provided for the candidate’s reference. (MLO: A, B, C, D, E)

Science Activities

The candidate will develop a clear and precise exploratory set of three natural science activities. A form is provided for the candidate to use in completing this assignment. (MLO: A, C, D, E)

Virtual Field Trip

The candidate will design a virtual, online field trip. Examples-museum, planetarium, green house, theme park, barrier reef, mountain top glacier, jungle, desert, or park. The trip is to be presented as a PowerPoint presentation and must include a chart diagramming the ways in which the trip incorporates the 3 subject areas as well as Bible/character education. (MLO: A, B, C, D, E, F)

Assessment Plan

The candidate will develop assessment activities centered around each subject area (the natural sciences, social sciences, Language Arts, and Bible/character education fields). An outline is provided for the candidate to use in forming his/her assessment activities. (MLO: G, D)

Unit Plan

The candidate will compile information from projects he/she has completed throughout the course in order to complete the lesson plans and overall unit. The candidate must fill out every aspect of the provided unit plan template. (MLO: A, B, C, D, E, G, I)

Reflective Paper

The candidate will write a 2-page reflection paper in current APA format about character education in schools today. A PowerPoint presentation and two articles will help guide the responses to the reflective questions. (MLO: A, C, E)